If you’re brand new to cheesemaking and want to get a sense of what it’s all about before you dive into a full class, this 1 hour presentation is for you! We’ll explore the basic science behind cheesemaking, go over ingredients and equipment needed, and make a simple artisan ricotta together. You’ll also get the sample a variety of cheeses that lend themselves well to home-cheesemaking. Currently we are only offering this class at our monthly Cheese and Cider Pairing at the St. Vrain Cidery and at privately scheduled events. Check our Calendar for our monthly class schedule and look at Mondays for the St. Vrain Cidery events.
These cheeses are a great place to start if you’re new to cheesemaking. Not only are they easy to make and require minimal specialized ingredients or equipment, they are also ready to eat very soon after they’re made! Check our Calendar for these classes and register today!
Soft “Fresh” Cheeses
This class will cover several easy and quick cheeses, including Chevre (soft goat cheese), Fromage Blanc (a milder version of soft cheese made with cow, goat or sheep milk), Cream Cheese and Cottage Cheese. We will discuss how to source the best milks for these and other cheeses, and you will learn how easy it is to make these in your own home! These are great starter cheeses because they are quick and easy and require relatively easy-to-find ingredients and minimal equipment.
Mozzarella, Ricotta & Burrata
In this class, you will learn an easy and delicious 30 minute mozzarella recipe including both a microwave method and a hot water/whey bath method. Learn what milks work best for this recipe and why, and then have some hands-on fun as we stretch the curd to create (and then eat!) a deliciously fresh and flavorful warm mozzarella. We’ll also make a quick, fresh ricotta and then combine these two wonderful cheeses into an easy burrata – a tasty stuffed mozzarella treat!
Feta & Queso Fresco
This class will cover two easy and delicious semi-soft cheeses. We’ll start by learning how to make an easy dry-salted version of feta known as Montoya, a recipe that won a Reserve Champion ribbon at the Boulder County Fair in 2013. We will also go over a recipe for brined feta and discuss the pros and cons of these two methods of making this cheese and you’ll get to sample a marinated version that won a Grand Champion ribbon in 2014. Next, we’ll make a batch of Queso Fresco, a quick and easy Latin American farm cheese. This is a fresh, bright, milky, and mild sliceable cheese that takes minimal time and equipment to make. We will make and taste several versions of Queso Fresco including a delicious jalapeno pepper variety.
Dessert & Gift Cheeses
This is a seasonal class that we offer around holiday season. We cover the how-tos of making chevre and feta then turn these two easy cheeses into a wonderful array of desserts and gifts. We’ll make and sample Party-in-a-Jar (Marinated Chèvre), Chocolate Truffle Chèvre, Herb-marinated Feta, Chocolate Feta Brownies, Pumpkin Chevre Cheesecake bars, and more! You’ll leave with a few samples and a bunch of creative and delicious ideas for your holiday entertaining and gift giving.
These cheeses are still fairly easy to make, but may require a little more specialized ingredients and equipment and also need to age for a while, so you’ll have to wait to taste your results! No pre-requisites are required for theses classes but if you’re brand new to cheesemaking, we recommend you read through our Cheesy-Pedia (download available on home page) before you come to class so you’ll be familiar with the basic terminology of cheesemaking. Check our class Calendar for the next available sessions of these classes.
Intro to Hard Cheeses
Some say that soft cheeses are easy and hard cheeses are hard, but in this class we will learn that that’s not necessarily so! We will start by making a delicious Italian hard cheese that uses simple ingredients and minimal equipment and only needs to age for 3 weeks! Plus you will learn how to age cheeses, wax a cheese wheel and find out how to make a cheese press for free!
Colby, Havarti, Gouda
These cheeses are all varieties of washed-curd cheeses which have a mild flavor and a moist texture created by diluting the whey with warm water during the cooking process. They are pressed and ripened like harder cheeses, but don’t require long-term aging to develop a full aroma and flavor. We will make a simple and delicious Colby together in class, and taste samples and review recipes for Havarti and Gouda.
Alpine (Swiss) Cheeses
We often think of Swiss as a particular cheese with holes in it, but actually it is a family of cheeses that are made in Switzerland and come in a wide variety of flavors. These and other Alpine cheese are usually semi-firm to hard in texture and many have holes or “eyes”. We will learn to make a Jarlsberg cheese which is a Norwegian version of Emmental. It has a sweet and milky taste and large eye structure. We will also go over a recipe and taste samples of Gruyere, made famous by cheese fondue.
Brie & Camembert
In the category of mold-ripened cheeses, these are best known for their white, bloomy rind and soft creamy center. Although complex-flavored, they are relatively easy to make. We will start with Brie and Camembert, highlighting the similarities and differences, and will also sample several other versions of Mold-Ripened cheeses including Saint Maure which is coated in Ash for a rich and pungent flavor.
These cheeses require a few more ingredients, special milks and/or a bit more skill and patience, but are still very doable for the home-cheesemaker. If you haven’t made much cheese yet, you’re still welcome to come to one of these classes but it is recommended that you read through our Cheesy-Pedia (download available on home page) before you come to class so you’ll be familiar with the basic terminology of cheesemaking. Check our Calendar for listings of upcoming sessions of these classes.
Cheddar Cheeses or Cheddar Curds
The process of “cheddaring” is what makes this family of cheeses develop their unique texture. Though cheddars take longer to produce than most cheeses, they can be enjoyed at various stages of development, from the “curd” stage, to right after pressing, to after several months of aging. The traditional color of cheddar come from adding a diluted extract from the annatto plant. In this class we will make a delicious “Milk Maid” Cheddar together, taste and go over recipes for several other varieties and look at different techniques to finish these cheeses including waxing, bandaging and a natural rind finish. In addition to pressed cheddar classes, we also are now offering a class on making fresh cheddar curds!
These cheeses get their blue veins by being inoculated with the mold, Penicillium roquefortii. The flavor tends to be sharp and acidic and the texture is usually rich and creamy. The blue-veins form inside the cheese by piercing the wheel to open the cheese to air which allows the mold to grow into the interior. In this class we’ll make and sample an Italian blue cheese, Gorgonzola, as well as go over recipes for Castle Blue, Fourme d’Ambert and Cambozola.
Washed-Rind “Stinky” Cheeses
This family of cheeses is finished during the aging process by washing their rinds with a cloth soaked in brine, to which a ripening bacteria may be added. Other washes might include beer or wine and some varieties might include the addition of herbs and spices. In this class we will make and sample several versions of a fairly simple Trappist-style cheese which has a mild, creamy and buttery flavor, and we will go over recipes for and taste samples of Reblochon and Taleggio.
Manchego and Cabra al Vino
Learn how to make two of the most popular Spanish cheeses. The first, Manchego, is a wonderful hard cheese traditionally made with Sheep’s milk. We’ll even fill you in on where you can source Sheep’s milk in the area. The second cheese, Cabra al Vino, is a nice semi-hard cheese that is made from goat’s milk and soaked in Spanish red wine. Delish!
ADDITIONAL CLASSES & COURSES:
These classes are taught on the small Boulder County dairy goat farm that was the original inspiration for the creation of The Art of Cheese for this hands-on interactive cheesemaking experience! Each class starts with a visit with our small herd of dairy goats. You’ll get to try your hand at milking a goat and then we’ll take that milk into our farmhouse kitchen and learn how to pasteurize it and make several varieties of farm-fresh cheese. At the end of class we’ll sit down together for a light lunch featuring our freshly made cheeses, fruit and bread. Class size is limited to 6 for a truly personal farm-to-table experience! These classes are usually offered on weekdays and you can check our class Calendar for the next scheduled class.
Tips, Tools & Techniques
For those who have been making cheese for awhile but but might have questions about some of the challenges of being a home-cheesemaker, this class is for you. We’ll cover many of the commonly asked questions about cheese making including working with curds, forms and molds, presses and pressing techniques, aging spaces, controlling temperature and humidity, affinage techniques, waxing and bandaging, and more! You’ll get some hands-on experience with each of these topics and a chance to ask questions and have your homemade cheeses evaluated (bring any samples with you that you want feedback on).
String Cheese/Pizza Cheese
Here’s a fun cheesemaking class to bring your kids to! We’ll get very hands-on with our 30 minute mozzarella recipe and finish off our homemade cheeses as string cheese and pizza cheese (with Italian spices and warm pizza sauce for dunking). This is a fun class for school or church groups, a family outing or a girl- or boy-scout activity. We are currently only offering this class at privately scheduled events. Need a minimum of 6 participants so gather a group of kids and book a private event today!
Family Mac & Cheese
Ooey, gooey Mac & Cheese- an American favorite! In this class we’ll think “outside the box” – boxed mac & cheese, that is. Bring the whole family (or a group of friends) to learn how to make some easy cheeses and then turn them into a variety of gourmet homemade mac & cheese dishes – which we’ll eat on the spot! This class will be appropriate for all ages (8+) so bring the family. We are currently only offering this class as a privately scheduled event so contact us today if you’d like more information.
Handcrafted Milk-based Soap
Learn how to make wonderful milk-based soaps using one of three different recipes. Our first recipe, Handcrafted Milk Soap, uses a combination of olive oil, coconut oil and palm oil to create a wonderfully moisturizing and sudsy soap. The second recipe, Old-Fashioned Milk Soap, uses lard as the main oil, along with coconut oil for a good lather. The final recipe is a simple glycerin melt-and-pour method that is easy and safe enough to do with kids! You will go home with several soap samples and a recipe packet. This class is only offered quarterly so check our class Calendar for the next scheduled offering.
Multi-Day Cheesemaking Courses
Ready to get really serious about cheesemaking or take a culinary vacation? Each month we offer a different two- or three-day cheesemaking course so you can learn as many cheeses as possible in a concentrated period of time. Themes range from Farm-to-Table classes where we visit local goat, sheep and cow dairies, to classes taught at local breweries and wineries and more. Visit our Calendar page and look for the classes highlighted in blue to find out what that month’s “bootcamp” style course is!